Kafa language

Kafa or Kefa (Kafi noono) is a North Omotic language spoken in Ethiopia at the Keffa Zone. It is part of the Ethiopian Language Area, with SOV word order, ejective consonants, etc.

Kafi noono
Native toEthiopia
Regionin Keffa Zone
Native speakers
830,000 (2007 census)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3kbr

A collection of proverbs in the language has been published by Mesfin Wodajo.[2]

Language codes
ISO 639-3None (mis)

Within the Kafa culture there is a caste of traditional hunters called the Manja/Manjo 'hunters'. They may once have spoken a different language. However, Leikola has shown that currently they speak Kafa with a number of distinctive words and constructions that they use, reinforcing the distinctions between themselves and the larger Kafa society.[3]


  1. ^ Ethiopia 2007 Census Archived 2010-11-14 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ 2012. Functions and Formal and Stylistic Features of Kafa Proverbs: Functional and Structural Approach. Lambert Academic Publishing.
  3. ^ Leikola, Kirsi. 2014. Talking Manjo: Linguistic repertoires as means of negotiating marginalization. University of Helsinki: PhD dissertation.

Further readingEdit

  • Brockelmann, Carl (1950): Zur Grammatik der Kafa-Sprache. in: Brockelmann, Carl (ed.): Abbessinische Berichte über die Verhandlungen der Sächsischen Akademie der Wissenschaften. Leipzig. pp 40–60.
  • Cerulli, Enrico (1951), Studi etiopici. Vol. IV: La lingua Caffina. Roma: Istituto Per L'oriente.
  • Fleming, Harold C. (1976), "Kefa (Gonga) Languages", in The Non-Semitic Languages of Ethiopia. Bender, M. L. (ed.)

External linksEdit